Brow Beat

This Genius Two-Ingredient Ice Cream Just So Happens to Be Vegan

A baking pan full of ice cream and a bowl with several scoops. Nearby, cherries on a cutting board.
Ty Mecham

With just two ingredients, you can blend together a cold, creamy ice cream base, then pop back outside for a quick Super Soaker battle (or whatever else you were planning to do with what’s left of your summer).

For this to be possible, the two ingredients in question—which, in Alice Hart’s The Way To Eat Now, just so happen to be vegan—really need to pull their weight.

Coconut milk (ingredient No. 1!) brings the creaminess and requisite fat to churn up into a light, smooth ice cream. And—in addition to a little more good, nutty fat—marzipan (ingredient No. 2!) brings its sweet, intoxicatingly almond-y flavor.

Marzipan on a pan next to cans of coconut milk.
Ty Mecham

If you’re thinking marzipan is more of a holiday thing, then you’re not alone. But it’s just as delightful in summer, especially against the clean canvas of coconut milk, instead of the hygge hodgepodge of a Swedish Princess cake or stollen.

Boom. 2 ingredients. End of story, right?

Not so fast. Hart also likes to crumble up the marzipan and toast it in the oven until melty and golden first, a trick she’s used to flavor other frozen treats. “This is almonds on steroids—sweet, full-bodied, caramelized, and fragrant,” Hart wrote to me (1).

I don’t know why this never occurred to me before, since toasting any nut is such a well-known way to deepen and develop its flavor into the best version of itself. Nuts mixed into a “candy dough” with sugar are no different.

The marzipan is now toasted.
Ty Mecham

This little toasting trick gives Hart’s marzipan ice cream a much more intense and stirring almond presence than the toasted almond pops from the ice cream truck, not unlike the difference between listening to your favorite song on your phone’s tinny speaker and a fancy pair of noise-cancelling headphones.

You can find marzipan at lots of grocery stores in the baking aisle (and always online), but Hart even included a bonus hack for making your own all-natural version with almond meal and extract (plus dates for moisture and sweetness). It will taste more like a date shake than a sculpted marzipan fruit, unsurprisingly, but it will still bring this simple vegan wonder into reach if you can’t locate marzipan the day you want it.

And whichever way you make it, cherries on top should be considered an almost nonnegotiable third ingredient.

2-Ingredient Toasted Marzipan Ice Cream From Alice Hart

Serves 4 to 6.

• 11 ounces natural marzipan (store-bought or homemade)
• 3 1/3 cups coconut milk
• cherries, to serve

See the full recipe on Food52.

(1) Hart also recommended scattering untoasted marzipan over the top of a frangipane tart with apricots or other stone fruits so that it toasts up as it bakes, or using the toasted marzipan to spike a custard or crème anglaise (bearing in mind that marzipan will always bring along some additional sugar and intensely nutty vibes, so tweak your recipes accordingly).

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